I’m pretty squarely in the camp of ‘the future belongs to mirrorless‘, because I’m rather fond of the smaller and lighter form factor (that’s bodies and lenses) and can clearly see with me own two eyes that the image quality of the newer product introductions is now rivaling larger kits. Clearly.
I recently raved about the Olympus OM-D EM-5 (see here) and have liked the Sony NEX 5N (here) and disliked the Fujifilm X-Pro 1 (here). Given those reviews, you’d maybe think that Olympus and its micro four thirds format would be running away with the market. [Note that Nikon has released the underwhelming (and sized) Nikon 1 system and Canon has announced its EOS M mirrorless, though that looks underpowered (what, no VF?) and outgunned.] But not so fast there. Sony and Fujifilm have announced a couple of new bodies that have the whole of the photoworld buzzing like bees. Both are 16 megapixel whizbang electronic view finder beauties, each with plenty of state-of-the-art features to keep even the most gearheadish among us occupied for months… but they take decidedly different approaches to the shooting experience. And to marketing.
The Fujifilm (X-E1) appeals to the old world, retro-loving, slower paced approach that would have seemed right at home to Henri Cartier-Bresson had he been still shooting in the present day. The Sony (NEX 6) seems aimed at the hey now crowd, with downloadable apps and a more modern look and feel. There’s no doubt both are capable shooters and 2 Guys Photo will have plenty to say when they hit the streets, but for now, I must admit to being fascinated by this difference in style and feel. The Fujifilm provides a cool metallic knob and dial interface while Sony has offered things like powerzoom and configurable, unmarked buttons. Note the marketing pieces below: one for the new ability to modify the onboard capabilities via purchasable apps (yup, Sony) and the other for the Cartier-Bressonesque approach to old world… shot in Morocco, so really, really old world… shooting (Fujifilm, you guessed it).
So, which are you?